Healy and Copley Lawn Utilities Project

Toward a More Sustainable Future

Copley lawn featuring students studying under a tree with yellow leaves
Photo By: Phil Humnicky/Georgetown Univ.

Project Overview

In June 2024, Georgetown is launching a renovation project on Healy and Copley Lawn. This utilities project is a multi-year project to replace aging underground utilities with more energy-efficient infrastructure. The renovation will occur in multiple phases through spring 2027 and will have portions of the lawn open at all times.

We recognize that this project will have impacts on our campus community, and we encourage you to explore this landing page for the project plan and the upcoming site improvements. The utility project on Healy and Copley Lawn is part of Georgetown’s long-term commitment to environmental stewardship and advancing sustainability on campus, in our local community, and in our broader world. More information on the technical aspects of this project will be posted on Georgetown Energy Partner’s site.

Est. CompletionSpring 2027
Project TypeSite Utility Improvements
CampusHilltop Campus

Project Team

Contact facilitiesplanning@georgetown.edu for more information about this project or others at Georgetown University. Members of the media should contact media@georgetown.edu.

Project PartnersGeorgetown Energy Partners, ENGIE
ContractorRiggs Distler
Project ManagerAlex Berley

Project Benefits

As Georgetown invests in a sustainable future, the university is committed to preserving this historic space and progressing toward a more sustainable environment for future generations.

Recent Messages

Project Phases

See Phases 1 and 2 below. Proposed closures are indicated in red. Stay tuned for updates on Phases 3-5. Please note that information is subject to change.

Phase 1: Main Entrance

Duration: June 2024 – November 2024

A portion of Healy Circle will be closed for construction, resulting in a partial closure of the sidewalk south of the John Carroll statue. Pedestrians will access Healy Circle via the north sidewalk.

Phase I

Phase 2: Copley Lawn

Duration: November 2024 – April 2025

Two sections of Copley Lawn will be closed for construction. The sidewalk through Copley Lawn will remain open, however the sidewalk in front of White-Gravenor Hall will be closed. A modified ADA pedestrian pathway will be in place. During this phase of the project, the section of Old North Way between Healy and Copley Hall will be closed to vehicles. A modified ADA pedestrian pathway will be in place.

Phase II

Construction Impacts

Construction Hours and Noise

Construction hours are Monday through Saturday 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. Construction will adhere to quiet periods of reduced noise during the hours of 7-8 a.m., Monday through Friday, and 7-9 a.m. on Saturdays, and during the reading period and final exam period. During construction hours, noise may be heard in nearby buildings.

Construction Vehicles

Construction vehicles will access the work area from the main entrance at 37th and O St. for on-campus work.  

Pedestrian Impacts

Pedestrian and ADA access between buildings will be maintained with modified pathways. These pathways can be found on the campus map.

Events

Construction will be paused during major Healy Lawn events, such as Spring Commencement, Reunion Weekend, Fall Convocation, and New Student Orientation.

Alternative Community Spaces

We encourage community members to take advantage of alternative outdoor community spaces on campus.

Site Improvements

Upon utility project completion, the following site improvements are expected as part of a restoration project:

  • Replace paving with consistent materials 
  • Restrict vehicular traffic while maintaining emergency vehicle access
  • Unite the sub-spaces with a clear and consistent landscape palette
  • Improve site lighting
  • Improve accessibility
aerial image rendering of Healy Lawn with improved features and trees
Concept Design (subject to change)

Frequently Asked Questions

Georgetown currently relies on a complex underground distribution network to supply the buildings on the Hilltop with heating, cooling, power, and water. The Central Utility Plant uses gas and electricity to produce high-pressure steam and chilled water across campus. The new system will convert existing steam equipment and distribution in the affected area to a hot water network that has less distribution and production losses, requires less energy, and can take advantage of sustainable technologies like heat recovery systems.

Existing buildings use steam directly to heat and humidify buildings and produce domestic hot water. This project will replace that steam infrastructure and energy conversion equipment and alternative humidification technology with a lower operating carbon footprint and less maintenance than the existing steam system.

The existing pipes and associated infrastructure in the affected area range from 40-100 years of age. In addition to replacing this aged infrastructure, the project will install modern pipes that feature state-of-the-art leak detection systems and insulation.

Project Location

Visit maps.georgetown.edu to locate the project.